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It is to be found in a life conformed to the vocation of genius-a life simple and pure, of high desires and lowly seeming-a life guarded from the intrusion of all purposes and passions which belong to the minds of others, and not to its own destination. It is thus that the originality of genius is to be preserved, by keeping inviolate the unity of life, by protecting to the mind the integrity of its inmost self.
To feed its own strength from all sources, from the works of others in study, from nature in natural life-to guard it, by exclusion of injury-to raise, refine, and purify thought, by cherishing within itself all gentle, good, and generous affections-and to lift up its own hope by the conscious bearing within itself of a great and high purpose; these seem to be the means by which that power in the spirit must be fostered, which is the first source to eloquence, of its first ascendaney over the minds and hearts of
But besides this higher labour of the mind, of which all perhaps acknowledge, as all must have felt the importance, there is a species of cultivation, express to the art itself, that is to be exercised, which is not only much neglected, but often disavowed -the cultivation of language itself, as the means of eloquence.
rest upon the means of art, but upon those natural means by which inherent force can make itself felt; and its success is no triumph of art, but a despotism won by violence over the spirits of men.
For the mind of high thought and impassioned sentiment, though it will of itself break forth into overpowering eloquence, is not of itself able to make its own eloquence beautiful or durable. When the spirit of a man pours itself forth in words into the ears of histening, thronging men, it is not by the words of his eloquence only that he holds them all rapt in audience, but in the tones of his voice, as they kindle from within, in his changing looks, and every unstudied gesture that bewrays the working of his mind -in all that, from the living man in the fervour of his own transport, brings upon them more overwhelmingly the communication of his spirit -lies the spell of power by which he seizes on their sympathy, and subjects their mind to himself. Such eloquence is no work of art: it is, in the living strife of men, the ascendancy of power which one wrests to himself over all the others; it is the sway of predominating force; and therefore it does not VOL. V.
The eloquence of such speakers, powerful in their own day, does not remain to the nation-it does not become incorporated in the literature of their country. For, written down, it is bereaved of its life. To language which has no breath of life, which is silent in its written character, art must supply that power over the reader's mind, which the dominion of a fervid spirit held over the sympathy of wondering hearers. The music of the words must come in place of the thrilling voice; the skill of their selection must give the fulness of their meaning; and the whole structure of oration must bring forth that clearness to the understanding, and, by the enchained succession of emotions, that force of passion, which overpowering sympathy brought almost in flashes upon the intellect, and in pulsations of the blood upon the heart. And art, too, with its elaborate perfection, must save the calm, collected, vigilant mind, from every shock to its purest highest judgment, which might have been borne down perhaps by the torrent of ungovernable feeling.
To him who would write eloquence, the study of language itself is of indispensable necessity-a wide, intricate, and difficult study, in which books are at once necessary and dangerous guides-in which the field for cultivation lies in nature, and yet the art of cultivation calls us away from nature.
The first study of language is the study of thought itself. For the paramount law which every writer assumes to obey, is the law of the intellectual mind. If we write, we must, by art, follow the natural courses of a mind unfolding its own thoughts. We must be skilled in the processes of thought, that if we are tempted for a moment to write that which we intend, but for which the mind of our reader is not yet prepared, we may at once reject it. For we must lead him gradually on. We have to shew him that which he does not know, to persuade him of that which he does not believe; and we must be guarded, not for a H
moment to lose our hold upon his intelligence, for we might not again recover it.
We must be skilful, then, to lead his intelligence on with us, step by step. We must be skilful, that is, to pursue and to express natural processes of the mind in thought. But however independent of words the acts of the mind may be (if they are ever entirely independent), yet to him who is to give them expression, they are involved in words; and he knows nothing of thought for the uses of eloquence, if he does not know it as it is interwoven with language. We have to study, therefore, that curious and subtle structure of human discourse, by which it is made the fit and correspondent expression to the natural inward workings of the mind. We have to study the science of language, not merely in the laws of its minuter structure, but in those laws and principles of the entire composition of discourse, by which it becomes a vehicle for the utterance, in all its various moods and conditions of action, of the action of the human mind-a science of exceeding metaphysical subtlety.
This is the first study of language: that study purely philosophical, which may be pursued in all languages, with a different character in all :-and best perhaps in those which are least familiar to use.
The next is the study of the words themselves of the language to be written :-a study again curious and difficult; yet following quite a different direction. For, in the study of the words of language, we seek to feel their beauty and power as parts of the living speech of those by whom they are spoken. This is less an intellectual study. It is rather the cultivation of a delightful sense of a perception instinct with feeling, by which we receive upon our minds, with instantaneous impression, the perfect force, as it touches thought, love, and imagination, of every woRD, which a mighty people, for ages past, has used for the pregnant expression-the vivid image of some conception of the soul, in which thought, love, and imagination do blend themselves together. This perception of the force of words, is at once severely exact, delicate, and passionate. It is formed in reading the works of those who have written the language with the happiest expres◄
sion: in part, perhaps, among the remains of the language as it existed in its primitive forms: and in great part, unquestionably, in the happy intercourse of life, from childhood upwards, whenever the words of living speech have dropped with delight on our ears, or sunk with deeper impression upon our hearts.
It happens that we are told of one of the greatest writers of our language, that he bestowed on it this peculiar study. MILTON studied, with love and diligent care, the words of English speech, that one day he might clothe in them imperishable thoughts. And in the monuments of his genius, both in his prose and in his more powerful verse, we feel very strongly, and with unceasing admiration, the effect of his singular study and deep science of language. Neither Homer, nor Dante, nor Shakspeare, nor any who have felt most strongly the trance of inspiration, have left us such memorable examples of the power with which the mind's conceptions may be imaged in words, and of the might that may be involved in the very structure of speech. If his study of language is ever in excess, perhaps the cause is in those habits of his mind, which gave to intellect altogether too great predominance, if it may be said so, in his composition of poetry. If the fault of what is sometimes felt by us with painful obtrusion, lies with him and not with ourselves, we should rather suppose that this excess of intellect has induced excess in the artifice of language, than that any argument is to be drawn from the writings of Milton, against the most studious cultivation of language.
No art can prosper which slights the materials by which it is to work. In every art the productions of genius are indeed nothing else than manifestations of the mind itself in material forms. Then, as it respects itself, let it honour the form in which it is to appear.
In fact, the study of the form by which the mind is to express itself, is at the same time a study of that mind which is to find expression in such a form: which is obvious with regard to language, the minuter studies of which are plainly studies of the subtlest working of the intellectual faculties. But the same truth holds, though not so apparently, of the other arts, of which
the material expression lies more remote from intellect.
But the artist studies the material form of expression, not merely for that investigation of his own mind, which is included in the study of its means of expressing itself; but still more perhaps for their sakes to whom he addresses himself by his art. He speaks to men: he calls on men for their sympathy. Then he must submit himself to be governed by the laws, to which, in nature, their sympathy is subjected. If their senses are impressed, and their imagining mind is held in fascination, by colours and shapes, the painter or the sculptor must be perfect in knowledge of those hues and forms which hold over their spirit this mysterious sway. If men have a mighty language of speech, and if, by a natural sensibility, or by inherited pride, their minds cleave to it with strong association, then he, whose art frames its works in speech, must, for their sakes, with earnest study and reverend observance, gather the force of their speech, that when he uses it, he may command their minds.
Perhaps the exemplification of this careful and fond study of language is to be found more among poets than the writers of prose: because, in the composition of poetry, the mind attempered to delight, feels more sensitively the exquisite form into which the material expression of its conceptions is wrought. And, on the same account, the reader of poetry reads with more awakened sensibility. Whence no poetry has great and permanent hold upon the love of a people, in which their language is not used with great knowledge and delight of the words themselves of the language.
Great writers in prose have, in some respects, a reputation and authority more independent of language: for we read their writings in some degree as works of science; looking through the expression to the thoughts. But this is only for the students of science. To a nation, those writers only are great who are eloquent: and those only are eloquent whose written words are music to living ears, and delight to beating hearts.
LIFE OF ANTONIO LAMBERTACCI.
[From "Historic Memorabili della Citta di Bologna ristrette da Gaspare Bombaci pelle vite di tre Huomini illustri, Antonio Lambertacci, Hanni Gozzadini, e Galeazzo Mariscotti. Dedicate all' Eminentissimo Prencipe Carlo Carafa Cardinal Legato." 1666.]
THIS work, from which I propose to make a few extracts, as being, in all probability, very little known among English readers, is written on a singular plan, but with great felicity, and even eloquence of style, and in the spirit of the best Italian historians. It comprises an outline of all the principal events that had taken place in the native city of its author, from the earliest times to the commencement of the sixteenth century, that outline being filled up and enlarged into a regular history, in three particular periods of time; the first of which contains the fatal and bloody feuds of the Lambertacci and Gieremei, from their first origin, about the time of the Modenese war, in 1249, to the final expulsion of the Lambertacci in 1281, an interval of thirty years, during which Antonio Lambertacci, the leader of one of the factions, occupies the
principal place, and accordingly gives name to the first book or division of the work.
After the famous defeat of the emperor Frederick II., before Parma, and the destruction of the fortified camp to which, in the arrogance of dominion, he had given the title of "the city of victory," the states which had embraced the party of the Guelphs (which was then the cause of freedom throughout Italy), began to elevate themselves upon the decline of the imperial power; and, among others, the citizens of Bologna reduced to their subjection the towns of Faenza, Imola, and Forli, together with almost all the surrounding territory of Romagna. The progress of their conquests at last alarmed the neighbouring state of Modena, which was more justly excited by the defection of Nonantola and San Cesario, these places having voluntarily withdrawn
themselves from its protection, to join the Bolognese confederacy. The ambassadors of Modena having in vain demanded restitution of their alleged dependencies, both states prepared for war, and the Modenese secretly strengthened themselves, by engaging the support of Enzo, or Henry, king of Sardinia, (the emperor's bastard son), who was then at Reggio with a numerous army, waiting an opportutunity to retrieve the honour lost by his father on several late occasions. The people of Bologna no sooner heard of this formidable accession to their enemies, than they sought to create some balance of power, by inviting the Marquis of Este to assume the office of Podestà, an honour which, according to the prevailing policy of the Italian republics, was always conferred on a foreigner, from the fear of entrusting private citizens with a dangerous pre-eminence. The Marquis, however, thought it prudent to decline the offer, and the Bolognese, reduced to the necessity of relying on their own unaided force, bestowed the cominand on Philip Hugoni, a native of Brescia, who shortly afterwards took the field with an army of 20,000 men. That of Modena amounted only to 2,000 more, but possessed a great superiority, in being partly composed of the regular and well-disciplined troops of Germany, and commanded by a general of great military talent and experience. Under such circumstances, it appeared to many of the elders in council, the most prudent part to act on the defensive within the walls of their city, but the bolder opinion prevailed, and the army marched on the direct road to Modena, attended by all the principal nobility of the state, and preceded by the Carroccio.*
* This celebrated machine, which it is well known, was not peculiar to Bologna, but used by all, or most of the Italian republics, is thus described in the work before us.
It was a car of fine workmanship, supported on four wheels, in shape square, and containing within it ten men, completely armed. In the midst of it was erected a pole, to which the standard was affixed, and the pole itself terminated in a golden cross at the top. The whole fabric was covered, as well as the oxen by which it was drawn and the charioteer, with a red and white cloth, suitable to the device of the city, and a priest always accompanied it to perform
The Carroccio of the Florentines is thus described by Ricordano Malespini, (the venerable chronicler qucted by Muratori in his Dissertation on the Military System of the ruder ages.See Athenæum, vol. I. p. 225.)
"The Carroccio was a car on four wheels, painted all over of a vermillion colour, on the top of which were elevated two large vermillion poles, supporting the grand standard of the republic, half vermillion and half white. It was drawn by a pair of great oxen, covered with vermillion cloth, which were absolutely set apart for this service, and the driver was a freeman of the city. This Carroccio was used by the ancients as a sign of triumph and dignity; and, whenever they went out in host, the knights and barons of the surrounding country drew it into the market place, and there consigned it into the hands of the people, who conducted it to the army. And for the purpose of guarding it were selected the most perfect, and valiant, and worthy, of the citizens." The inhabitants of Florence,
he adds, had, besides their Carroccio, a famous bell, which was rung night and day for a full month, before they sallied forth on any expedition, by way of vaunting generosity, to give fair warning to the enemy of their intended march. And this bell, he says, was by some called Martinella, but by others, the Bell of Asses," and when they set out on their march, it was placed on a wooden tower, in another car, which
also accompanied the army. "To these
mass, and for other occasional services. The machine was guarded by 1500 soldiers, having for their captain some valiant knight, distinguished by the state with the gift of a coat of mail, a sword, and a golden belt, and the payment of a public salary, a thing unusual in those days, when the Italian republics, divided into centuries, did not pay their forces, but the citizens, without fee or reward, not only performed all warlike services for their parent state, but also contributed their assistance to her allies. Whenever the Carroccio stopped, the army likewise halted; there was the Prætorium, and from thence, as from the tribunal, the commander harangued, issued his orders, and gave the word of battle. The squadrons, dispersed in fight, re-united themselves within its sacred enclosure, and set themselves in order to renew the engagement, and whenever it fell into the power of the enemy, the day was held for lost. It was never brought into the field without the consent of all the different councils. In time of peace it was used at the meetings of illustrious personages, or on certain great s lemnities was ordered out by the Antiani, (or members of the supreme council,) for the purpose of gratifying and raising the spirits of the people by the image of their ancient triumphs !"
two pieces of parade, the Carroccio and the Martinella, was limited the pride of our simple ancestors.” Malesp. Hist. Fior. cap. 164.
came after, covered with purple, drawn by oxen, uniformly caparisoned, and guarded by young noblemen, arrayed in cuirasses, bearing long swords, and uncovered above the shoulders. Then walked the prisoners with a proper escort, and among them many German barons and others of note, the last being Enzo himself, sitting upon a mule, the subject of all discourse, and the object of every eye. All admired the beauty and majesty of his countenance, which bore evidence by every token of his royal descent. Nor were there wanting many, who, pitying the ill fortune which had befallen the son of so great an emperor, stained the glories of their country with the tears rather of men than of citizens. Last appeared the robe of purple, crowned with laurel, and victorious general, on horseback, clad in a followed by companies of soldiers armed with breastplates, and also laurelled. To enjoy so magnificent a scene, not only were the porticoes and the streets filled with spectators, but the very roofs were crowded, and the ladies standing at their windows divided with the conquerors the general ad
The expedition ended as gloriously as it was valiantly commenced; for, a general engagement having at last taken place at the bridge of Sant Ambrosio, the Modenese and Germans were completely routed with great slaughter, and the loss of no less than 8000 men made prisoners, among whom we find the names of Bosio Dovara, lord of Cremona, Gerardo Pio, and Thomasino Gorzano, of the most illustrious houses of Modena, and to crown the whole, of the unfortunate king of Sardinia himself. Antonio Lambertacci, then a very young man, but already conspicuous for his talents, was not only the principal instrument in obtaining their great success by the advice which he gave in council previous to the battle, but became still more the object of applause and envy, by having, with his own hand, in single combat, brought the king to the ground, and compelled him to yield himself captive to his enemies. Immediately after the battle, he was selected to bear the good tidings of victory to the city, where he was received with the loudest acclamations of gratitude and joy. Meanwhile, Modena was invested by the conquering army, and the Podestà, having left to Ludovico Gieremei, (another noble Bolognese) the conduct of the siege, repaired himself to Bologna to participate in the ensuing triumph; a spectacle unequalled in majesty and splendour by any since the days of the Roman empire, except when Castruccio had discomfited the army of Florence, and when Alphonso of Arragon had expelled King René, and acquired the throne of Naples. The streets through which the procession was to pass, were decorated with triumphal arches, whereon were exhibited many symbolical representations of victory. The ground was strewed with flowers, the halls were ornamented with ancestral images, so that the dead seemed to be spectators of the triumph, as well as the living. The Podestà, with Antonio by his side, was met near the city by the nobility and all the populace. Then entered, first, the trumpets and warlike instruments of music; the light cavalry followed, and then the foot soldiers, crowned with oak. Behind them were trained along the dust, the standards and ensigns of the enemy, and the imperial eagles, while a display was made of the spoil, consisting of vessels of gold and silver, and all the furniture of the royal pavilion. The Carroccio
Equal in rank with Antonio, and next to him in reputation for the conduct of this war, was Ludovico Gieremei (of whom mention has already been made); and from their rivalship on the present occasion, may be deduced all the subsequent calamities of The first beginnings of this bloody distheir families and of their native city.
sension are detailed, and the character of the ambitious hero of a Republic drawn, with considerable ability in which follows:passage
"Antonio having acquired a high reputation, endeavoured the more zealously to maintain and augment it by the acts of peace and the dignities of civil government, the more he was incited by the emulation
*The unfortunate king of Sardinia, after having thus been made a public spectacle, was condemned to pass the remainder of his days in an honourable imprisonment, where, to use the expression of our author," he. enjoyed every indulgence of royalty, except his liberty.' The emperor Frederic used his best endeavours, first with threats, afterwards with unbounded offers from his treasury, to procure the emancipation of his son; but these sturdy republicans were proof to the temptation, and constantly refused to yield up, for any consideration, the glory of retaining within their walls a royal captive. Enzo, resigning at length the vain hopes of freedom, addicted himself entirely to the honourable pursuits of literature and the arts, and obtained a respectable rank among the ancient Tuscan poets. He died in the 23d year of his captivity, and was buried at Bologna with royal hono